Aperture & exernal HDD question

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Aljrob, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. Aljrob macrumors newbie

    Mar 19, 2008
    Hi all.

    I have just graduated from a point and shoot to a Panasonic GH2 (love it), and have now begun using Aperture 3 rather than iPhoto on my early 2008 MB Pro to manage my photos going forwards. Of course, I’ve now discovered that Aperture is quite the resource hog and so it’s upgrade time (damn, “have” to buy a new ‘puter!). I have a 2011 MB Pro (2.3Ghz i7 with 512GB SSD) on order and 8GB of DDR 3 arriving from Crucial. Since I have this brand-new-computer opportunity I want to make sure I’m organising things properly before I start transferring things across, and so have a few Aperture-related questions. (In case it’s relevant, I’m shooting in RAW+JPEG. So far I’ve been using RAW as master, but have since learnt it might be a good idea to import JPG as master and switch to RAW only when I need to make corrections, so I’ll probably do that going forwards.)

    I understand that moving to referenced masters on an external drive might be a good idea and save me precious SSD-space. To that end, questions are:

    1 .Can anyone recommend a companion external HDD for Aperture and the 2011 MBPro? I guess either FW800 or Thunderbolt are the way to go. The Lacie Little Big Disk Thunderbolt might be an option but is this overkill for Aperture masters or would FW800 be sufficient. I’ve also seen the G-Tech G-RAID mini, Lacie Rugged – thoughts welcome.
    Key requirements are (i) as compact as possible, and (ii) bus powered.

    2. What kind of performance can I expect if I go down this route? Is there going to be significant loading/processing delay whenever I switch to a new image?

    3. How will Aperture cope with (eg) syncing photos to iPad / iPhone if the drive containing the masters isn’t connected? Put another way, are JPG renders saved in the Aperture library (i.e. on my MBP SSD) or with the masters?

    Thanks in advance to anyone who responds!

  2. undies1993 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 10, 2011
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    Did you ever receive any answers? I am curious about 2 and 3. Also have you done it at all? What is your experience?
  3. keithjfuller macrumors regular


    Jan 28, 2010
    Go here: http://www.mosaicarchive.com/2012/02/09/how-to-move-photos-from-aperture-to-an-external-hard-drive/

    They explain how to do it. Also, I just moved my entire library of masters to a 7,200 RPM FW800 drive and it is actually faster, but this is probably because my computer was so out of space.

    I would imagine that when you send folders and things to iPads it loads the jpeg preview, not the master. Aperture leaves your masters alone and applies edits to jpegs, so iPad must not be using masters.
  4. jbg232 macrumors 65816


    Oct 15, 2007
    1. You will see a benefit from using faster hard drives but given that aperture is CPU/GPU intensive most of all the performance benefit will not be as great as getting upgrades for those two things. Barefeats discusses this here.

    2. iPhone and iPad cannot read RAW master files so they will be using the built in jpeg previews.
  5. mustang_dvs macrumors 6502a


    Feb 9, 2003
    Durham, NC
    Whatever solution you do utilize, create a redundant backup(s).

    I have the masters (RAW+JPEG) on a separate hard disk inside my MacPro, dedicated to photo storage. TimeMachine backs-up the local user files and the photo files to an external 3TB drive.

    DataBackup 3 writes a backup of the photos and the boot volume to a dedicated FreeNAS box, utilizing an 8TB RAID5 array (which also backs-up my MBP).

    DataBackup also writes a daily incremental duplicate of the photo HD to a 1TB portable USB drive, which is swapped with another, offsite, on a weekly basis.
  6. sapporobaby macrumors 68000


    Sep 27, 2007
    3 earth minutes from your location....
    Hi. Hope my answers help.

    I use Aperture 3.3 on my Mac. My Aperture library resides on a Lacie Little Big Disk (1TB) Thunderbolt. I use this at home as my main library. When I travel, I have a WD My Passport Studio (1TB) FW800. Both are fast enough to work in real-time, i.e. processing on the fly. As my library is growing now that I am shooting with a Nikon D4, and soon D800 I will upgrade my drives internally...The Lacie is running in RAID 0 because I want to maximize the space and because I do constant backups to my Aperture vault. Also the WD Passport is also always up to date and synced with my Lacie, vault and Time Capsule. :) Overkill? Yes. Secure? Pretty much...

    Aperture needs the drive connected to sync or push photos to the iPad or iPhone. Once they are there on your iPad or iPhone, they remain there even if the drive is not connected and Aperture is opened. I use iTunes to sync my images, but I created a folder that contains the images that I want to view on my iPad/iPhone...

    Again, hope this helps....
  7. keithjfuller macrumors regular


    Jan 28, 2010
    D800 - make sure you get a 50TB hard drive or two, or you will fill it up in about a week!
  8. sapporobaby macrumors 68000


    Sep 27, 2007
    3 earth minutes from your location....
    I've known this for a while...

Share This Page